Yang & Earth
Virtue can’t live alone; neighbours will spring up around it.
Dark plains soil, good for crops,
The plants there sweet as cakes.
We grow here, we meet to govern,
The tortoise-omens are cast.
stop here, then, stop here,
Build your house in this place.
This poem is famous because it tells us how decisions were made in ancient China.
When a momentous decision was needed –
such as where a wandering people should settle –
the gods were asked their advice
throught a strange divination process using crachs in tortoise-shell.
So this poem advises you to turn to Heaven, to God,
and go humbly in prayer, meditation and quiet –
hear in your heart what is right to do.
The proverb indicates that those who build their actions on such a foundation
will find they are supported by others attracted to the virtues and values thus displayed.
©Loes Raaphorst 10/2005